By Peter Lewicki
Imagine being the tallest person in your class, or in a small town, where everyone knows you. That would put you in the shoes of the 8,400 followers of Kendra Triblet’s blog, “Tall Girl Problems.”
Malija Kizauvijek, one follower, recently wrote that she is 12 years old and 5 feet 10½ inches tall, adding, “I live in Croatia (Europe) and there are all kinds of shapes and sizes but in my city no woman is that tall.”
Triblet, 20, and the founder and editor of the blog, is also 5 feet 10½ inches tall–though she is a college student in New York City. Triblet, who hails from Jamaica, Queens, said she started the blog in 2011 as a way to vent about how she felt about her height but only posted about twice a month. Little did she know the huge impact the blog would have on young women and girls around the world.
Triblet, who is majoring in history at Hunter College, was so busy with schoolwork and track practice she did not have time to regularly update the blog. After two months of infrequent activity, she noticed that her follow count had nearly reached 1,000. Thanks to the countless “reblogs” of her posts, Triblet’s content and comments had gained a wide following among young women and girls, some of whom are wracked by insecurities and others who just want to share their experiences.
“I started the blog just for myself,” said Triblet, during a break from her classes at Hunter. “You go on Tumblr today and there will be other ‘Tall Girl Problems’ blogs, but when I created mine, there was none.”
“There was ‘Short Girl Problems’ and ‘White Girl Problems’ and ‘Black Girl Problems,’ but nothing for tall girls. So that’s when I decided to take charge and start it,” said Triblet. “When I first started the blog, I felt very self-conscious about being tall. In elementary school, my friends were around my height, but as I kept going through my school career, I realized I was much taller than your ‘average’ girl.”
Starting the blog was a way for Triblet to connect with other tall women who felt as she did—insecure about their height. Now the blog has gained followers worldwide, with young women posting from, among other places, Brazil and Mexico. The blog has had more than 254,300 page views since Triblet launched the site and the numbers are growing each day. Currently, the blog gets over 300 visits per day.
When you first go to the website, you see giraffes as the background, a bit of information on Triblet’s life and, then, right under that, the posts from women and girls. Triblet tries to respond to the posts on a weekly basis.
“Sometimes when they ask me a question in the frame of what a guy’s opinion might be, I get my tall guy friend and we collaborate,” said Triblet. “I always make sure to tell the person that the answer is not just my own but also that of a friend.”
Amber, one of Triblet’s followers recently posted, “I’m really close to 6 feet my boyfriend of two years is about 5 feet 9 inches. My question to you is, what do you think about tall girls dating short guys?” This is a question that is often on the site.
“It shouldn’t be the determining factor in whether or not you would date someone,” Triblet answered on the blog. Triblet’s responses often encourage young women to look beyond their height.
Women who contribute vary by age and profession. Some businesswomen have commented, as well as models. They all find community on the blog.
Sarah Muse, for example, posted that when “girls say ‘Oh my God, you’re scary tall’ and I just smile and respond, ‘Yeah, I’m a model.’”
Shumana Ashique, a friend of Triblet’s from middle school and high school, said, “I always thought being short was embarrassing and annoying, but Kendra made me realize that tall girls can feel insecure too.”
Today, the website deals with everything from personal issues to advice. Some girls say they hate their height because they are the tallest person in their small village or can’t find a boy taller than them.
One girl posted, “There are so many incredible women in the world who are regularly made to feel bad simply because they are a little taller than what society deems as ‘normal.’ As a very tall 6-foot-7-inch woman, I know those pains all too well.”
Other girls post suggestions for retailers that sell a variety of clothing for tall girls. Triblet has now added a section, “Shop Tall,” where she and followers can post the names of clothing retailers where they had a good experience finding clothes, as well as stores to avoid. The section includes retailers from many locations. Triblet said she receives no revenue for these postings.
The success of her blog has helped Triblet overcome her own insecurities. “Now, I love being tall because I know that it makes me unique and I am beautiful for it. Not that short girls aren’t,” said Triblet. “I’m just saying that tall girls are just as beautiful.”
Triblet says her favorite quote about being tall comes from “Look at the Brightside” by the Indy band Never Shout Never: “‘You’re only as tall as your heart will let you be and you’re only as small as the world will make you seem,’” she sang recently with her eyes closed and a smile on her face.